The 2018 finalists among Top 3 names at the seeding listPhoto: Courtesy ITTF
2019 BUTTERFLY European U21 Championships, Gondomar, Portugal, 7-10 March – Women’s Singles Preview
Two Russian players, Valeria SHCHERBATYKH and Maria TAILAKOVA, are listed as no. 1 and no. 3 respectively at the Women’s Singles seeding list of the 2019 BUTTERFLY European U21 Championships. They fought in the gold medal contest of the 2018 BELGOSSTRAKH European Under 21 Championships, as TAILAKOVA won gold in straight games.
The 2019 championships commences tomorrow, March 7th, in the Portugal city of Gondomar, European City of Sports in 2017, the host of the 2016 European Top 16 Cup. Regarding Women’s Singles participants, 56 players in total will compete in at the place where Portugal’s national champions have been crowned last weekend. Top 8 seeded players will go directly to Stage 2 and they are following: 1 Valeria SHCHERBATYKH (RUS), 2 Lisa LUNG (BEL), 3 Maria TAILAKOVA (RUS), 4 Audrey ZARIF (FRA), 5 Marie MIGOT (FRA), 6 Daria TRIGOLOS (BLR), 7 ZHANG Xuan (ESP) and 8 Tatiana KUKULKOVA (SVK).
Reigning European U21 champion TAILAKOVA had several successes at the international stage since their cadet gold medal at the 2015 European Youth Championships. Russian talent and Lisa LUNG were semi-finalists at the 2017 STAG European U21 Championships, Sochi, Russia.
Current no. 2 seed in Gondomar Lisa LUNG of Belgium was 2014 EYCH runner-up of the Cadet Girls event, the success that has been reserved before (twice - 2012, 2013) for the actual no. 5 seed in Gondomar, Marie MIGOT of France.
Beside Top 8 names, there are several rising stars who proved their talent on the international stage. Like no. 15 seed Adina DIACONU (ROU), multiple gold medallist from European Youth Championships, and two her teammates from Romanian National Team, no.18 Andreea DRAGOMAN (ROU) and no. 53 Tania PLAINAN (ROU), the runner-up of the 2018 European Youth Championships. DRAGOMAN and PLANIAN finished second and third respectively at the 2018 European Youth Top 10 in the Portugal city of Vila Real.
Two years ago, at the inaugural 2017 STAG European U21 Championships, Sochi, Russia, Chantal MANTZ clinched the crown in Women’s Singles Event, as she overcame team-mate and club-mate WAN Yuan in six games. Lisa LUNG of Belgium and Maria TAILAKOVA of Russia were semi-finalists.
Last year’s 2018 BELGOSSTRAKH European Under 21 Championships saw Maria TAILAKOVA’s victory against her compatriot Valeria SHCHERBATYKH in straight games of the gold medal contest. Natalia BAJOR (POL) and Anastasia KOLISH (RUS) were semi-finalists.